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Ozzy Osbourne, Newsted, tons more hard rock and heavy metal news

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  • Robert
    Firefighters were called to Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne s home in Beverly Hills, California Thursday morning (January 17) after a candle Sharon had left burning
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 17, 2013
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      Firefighters were called to Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne's home in Beverly Hills, California Thursday morning (January 17) after a candle Sharon had left burning through the night exploded in its glass vase and sparked a small blaze in their living room.

      Speaking about the incident on today's edition of the CBS program "The Talk", which she co-hosts, Sharon said: "Everybody is fine. There was only Ozzy, myself and the dogs in the house last night.

      "At five o' clock [in the morning], I heard a noise like metal had fallen. I thought it was my housekeeper coming in and she had dropped her keys on the tiles, that's what it sounded like, so I didn't pay any attention. A few minutes later, my eyes are stinging and my throat's closing up, [I thought], 'Something's weird smelling in here.' Then my dog started to bark. I go downstairs and the whole living room [was on fire]. The candle had burst and the cracking sound was the glass and the candle exploding...

      "My husband had an operation on his hand yesterday so he's in a complete cast... He comes down and goes, 'Oh, the fire, the fire!' [and tries to put it out[ with his hand in the cast. Then he opens the French doors and I go into the kitchen and throw water on it and it erupted...

      "Ozzy's front of his hair from (his ear down is), gone! His eyebrows (are gone)... he's got like, skinned cheeks. We are, like, two idiots, it was like The Three Stooges... Everything you are not meant to do — go to bed with candles alight, open the doors and put water on — we did it all."

      She continued: "[The firemen] come up, they give us a lecture, and Ozzy's like, 'She's been doing this to me for 32 years! You tell her, you tell her, no more candles!'

      "I apologize to my husband because he put himself out. He made his hand worse, it started to bleed, the whole nine yards, and I'm sorry and I love you and I will never light a candle again...

      "I want to thank the firemen from Beverly Hills Fire Station because you are magnificent there and I want to say to everyone out there, please, please check your candles before you go to bed."

      In March 2005, a fire broke out at Ozzy's Buckinghamshire mansion, causing considerable damage to the home. No one was reported injured during the blaze, but Ozzy and Sharon were treated for smoke inhalation, as were two of their employees.
      "Metal", the debut EP from NEWSTED, the new band led by former METALLICA, VOIVOD and FLOTSAM AND JETSAM bassist Jason Newsted, sold around 6,200 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 62 on The Billboard 200 chart.

      "Metal" was released on January 8 exclusively via iTunes. The EP was made available as a physical CD on January 15.

      "Metal" contains the following tracks:

      * Soldierhead
      * Godsnake
      * King Of The Underdogs
      * Skyscraper

      By purchasing all four songs, you will receive a copy of Jason's handwritten lyrics.

      NEWSTED is:

      Jason Newsted - Bass, Lead Vocals
      Jesus Mendez Jr. (THE NAPOLEON BLOWNAPARTS) - Drums
      Jessie Farnsworth - Guitar, Backing Voice

      "Soldierhead", the first video from NEWSTED, can be seen below. Directed by Leon Melas, the clip was filmed on December 15, 2012 in an abandoned factory in California.

      In a recent interview with Sonic Excess, Newsted stated about the video shoot: "It's just a simple thing, and I just wanted to capture the band. There is no heavy concept, no literal thing about bullets chasing your head or any of those things. It's old-school metal and most likely will be black and white. It was shot in an old factory. It was a gnarly, dusty, old factory and it had energy. That is what I will describe it as. I haven't got to play to the camera like that for a long time, and I was really going for it. The soldier version is something everyone will have. An HD version will be available on iTunes, but I want everyone to have it for free across the world. I want it to be the tip of the spear for everybody to see and hear what exactly it's all about."

      "Soldierhead" was premiered on the December 17, 2012 edition of the "Eddie Trunk Live" show on SiriusXM satellite radio.
      According to Alhambra Source, the Grill 'Em All food truck is opening up a restaurant location at the Renaissance Theater Plaza in Alhambra, California on January 19.

      Launched in 2009 in Los Angeles, Grill 'Em All offers a startling array of gourmet burgers with themes directly influenced by heavy metal music and pop culture.

      Some seven-ounce burgers include Waste 'Em all (green chilies, pepper jack, beer-soaked onion), Blue Cheer (bleu cheese, cranberry gastrique, Munchos), Molly Hatchet (seared fennel sausage gravy, bacon, maple), Dee Snider (peanut butter, jelly, bacon, Sriracha) and the Behemoth (grilled cheese buns, cheddar, bacon, beer soaked onions, pickles Grandma's Mosh Pit BBQ Sauce).

      The Grill 'Em All food truck was the first-ever winner of Food Network's "The Great Food Truck Race", earning the team $50,000.

      Grill 'Em All is led by the team of Chef Ryan Harkins and Matthew Chernus.

      For more information, visit www.grillemalltruck.com.
      Guitarist/vocalist Robb Flynn of San Francisco Bay Area metallers MACHINE HEAD has scheduled five acoustic solo shows around his appearance at this year's NAMM (National Association Of Music Merchants) show, which is being held January 25-27 at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, California. Robb will play at various bars and intimate clubs in the greater Orange County/Los Angeles area. He will be performing a mix of cover songs and re-interpreted MACHINE HEAD songs.

      The dates are as follows:

      Jan. 21 - Hollywood, CA - On The Rox
      Jan. 23 - Riverside, CA - Mission Tobacco Lounge
      Jan. 24 - San Diego, CA - Brick By Brick
      Jan. 25 - Anaheim, CA - NAMM
      Jan. 26 - Fullerton, CA - The Slidebar Rock-N-Roll Kitchen

      MACHINE HEAD guitarist Phil Demmel told The Nervous Breakdown in a recent interview that the band is planning to start compiling ideas for the follow-up to last year's "Unto The Locust" at the start of 2013 for a tentative early 2014 release.

      "After [the recent] tour [with DETHKLOK], we want to get in and start writing," Demmel said. "We've got a couple of things for next year, but for the most part we want to get in and hopefully start recording before the end of the year next year. Have we thought about directions or any of that? It hasn't really been agreed upon yet. I think we're just going to write like we have been."

      He added, "Our formula has been to just come up with something and see what happens. Nothing contrived, you know? That's how [MACHINE HEAD's latest single/video] 'Darkness Within' happened, and that's how a lot of the stuff on the last album happened, so we'll just see how we progress. [MACHINE HEAD guitarist/vocalist] Robb [Flynn] took classical lessons before the last record, so I think it's just going to be an amalgamation of everything we've learned so far. We keep evolving, and it's not going to be 'Blackening II' and it's not going to be 'Unto The Locust II'. I think it's going to be our strongest record."

      "Machine Fucking Head Live", the new live album from MACHINE HEAD, sold 3,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release. It's the band's second live effort; "Hellalive" came out in 2003.

      MACHINE HEAD is currently seeking a new label home following the expiration of the band's contract with longtime record company Roadrunner Records.
      Former IRON MAIDEN singer Paul Di'Anno has recorded a song with the Paraguayan metal band RUSHMORE.

      In 2008 RUSHMORE was the band that supported Di'Anno on his Latin American tour.

      After a lot of negotiations, RUSHMORE was finally able to get their old friend to collaborate with them on their new album.

      The first single from the CD, "Kingdom Of Demons", is available for streaming below. (Note: The track doesn't feature Di'Anno.)
      The Station Fire Memorial Foundation — which was formed in order to procure, construct, and maintain a fitting memorial to those affected by the deadly blaze on February 20, 2003 at The Station in West Warwick, Rhode Island — announced today that it does not wish to be associated with a recent benefit concert being promoted by Jack Russell of GREAT WHITE, the band whose pyrotechnics ignited the fire.

      The organization has released the following statement regarding the event:

      "On January 16, 2013 it came to our attention that a press release announcing a benefit show in Hermosa, California was being promoted by Jack Russell stating that proceeds would be given to the Station Fire Memorial Foundation. This event was not approved by, nor endorsed by the Station Fire Memorial Foundation. We require all third party fundraisers to be recognized and approved by our organization prior to advertising.

      "Upon hearing about this event, contact was made with Mr. Russell's management company. The Station Fire Memorial Foundation felt that this event was not something we wished to be associated with. This is due to the resentment and animosity still felt by many of the families and survivors that our very organization represents. We feel that the upset caused by his involvement would outweigh the amount of funds raised at this event. It is our intent as an elected board to put the needs and best interests of those we represent before any monetary gain.

      "Mr. Russell's manager, Ms. Valerie Ince, responded that she would remove the name of the Station Fire Memorial Foundation from the event and another worthy charity would be chosen. We thanked her, and tried to have all traces of the event taken down from various music news websites before any damage could be done. Instead of graciously adhering to our heartfelt and polite request, Ms. Inc then released an additional statement to the media.

      "We stand behind our decision that our organization represents the feelings and the needs of the family members and survivors above the need for the publicity or opportunity of one person."

      GREAT WHITE guitarist Ty Longley was one of the people who perished in The Station blaze, which became the fourth deadliest fire in U.S. history.

      In 2008, the band agreed to pay $1 million to survivors and families of the victims of the fire. They then launched a multi-year benefit tour for the Station Family Fund.

      The Station Fire Memorial Foundation is a 100% volunteer effort. There are no administrative costs. Every dollar raised by the Station Fire Memorial Foundation will go directly to address the costs of construction and maintenance of the memorial. Construction is estimated to begin spring of 2013.

      For more information, visit www.stationfirememorialfoundation.org.
      L.A. GUNS has apparently parted ways with its guitarist of one month, Frankie Wilsey (SEA HAGS, ARCADE), and has replaced him with Michael Grant from ENDEVERAFTER. Grant will make his live debut with L.A. GUNS this weekend in Chicago and Detroit.

      Writing on his Facebook page, L.A. GUNS bassist Scotty Griffin said: "Is [Michael] our permanent guitarist? What happened to the last guitarist? Whose solo album is better, Paul's or Ace's? I can't say... I'm just the bass player. But you heard it here first. Stay tuned." He added in a separate post: "Set up and ready to rock Illinois tonight! First show of the year, and first show with our newest member, Michael Grant of ENDEVERAFTER on lead guitar!"

      Due to "extenuating circumstances and musical differences," guitarist Stacey Blades announced his departure from L.A. GUNS in early December.

      Blades played on four L.A. GUNS albums: "Rips The Covers Off" (2004), "Tales Trom The Strip" (2005), "Loud And Dangerous: Live From Hollywood" (2006) and "Hollywood Forever" (2012). He also authored a book, "Confessions Of A Replacement Rockstar", which was published in 2009.
      Wind-Up Records has announced the signing of rock act FILTER. The band is currently readying a new album in Los Angeles at Blue Room studios with producer Bob Marlette (BLACK SABBATH, ATREYU, SALIVA). This will be the group's sixth studio LP, and follows the 2010 offering "The Trouble With Angels". The CD is being written and recorded by leader Richard Patrick and guitarist Jonny Radtke, as well as collaborator Marlette. There will also be performances from touring members Jeff Friedl and Elias Mallin (drums) and Phil Buckman (bass). The lead single will impact radio in March, with the album following in May.

      Wind-up Records President Ed Vetri states: "We're thrilled to welcome Richard Patrick and FILTER into the Wind-Up family. This is a successful band with an extremely impressive body of work and I'm happy to say that based on the demos I've heard, this new album could very well be their best to date. FILTER is more committed than ever to delivering great repertoire and bringing these songs to life at their live shows throughout 2013."

      Adds Patrick: "We're excited to enter a new phase of our career with Wind-Up. They're expecting great things from us and we plan to deliver."

      In a 2012 interview with "All Knowing Force", Patrick said about the songwriting process for the new CD, "One of the main things we set out to do, we said let's make a song with all the elements of 'Hey Man Nice Shot', and we sat there and it wrote itself." He added, "We didn't want to write the same bass line or guitar progression, but it had to be an amazing riff; let's start with that. The riff was so good, it's a two-bar pattern, and we throw guitar over it with drums and I scream and the bass line never changes, it's a nonstop bass line that never ever changes."

      Regarding the inspiration for the new material, Patrick said, "We were talking about some of the things that are going on in my life; there's been a lot of betrayal from people surrounding me. So we were thinking 'Hey Man Nice Shot', that's something that describes a desperate man's actions and trying to make sense of it, almost like a joke. So we started talking about betrayal and we played around with the words 'Take That Knife Out of My Back' and all of a sudden this song just wrote itself."

      On the topic of the overall direction of the new CD, Patrick said, "We have this beautiful record that starts off heavy and mean and then it goes back to the more moody, almost joyful parts of life. For me, the record that we always try to model is the 'Title Of Record' era — that sets the standard in how heavy and how light we can go. We just aspire to make the songs as good and I think the songwriting is superior, we just have to make sure the performances are as desperate and powerful as those crazy takes I did when I was kid."
      Austrian symphonic metallers VISIONS OF ATLANTIS will release their new album, "Ethera", on March 22 via Napalm Records. The CD was produced and mixed by Frank Pitters and Jakob Grabmayr at the Wildonemusic Studios. The mastering duties were handled by Mika Jussila at Finnvox in Helsinki, Finland.

      Regarding the new album title, VISIONS OF ATLANTIS said, "'Ethera' is a word mix out of 'ether' as the quintessence of this band, the energy between the five band members, the fifth album and 'era,' leading VISIONS OF ATLANTIS to some new and interesting musical and lyrical shores while still remaining typically VISIONS OF ATLANTIS!"

      "Ethera" track listing:

      01. The Ark
      02. Machinage
      03. Avatara
      04. Vicious Circle
      05. Hypnotized
      06. Tlaluc's Grace
      07. Burden Of Divinity
      08. Cave Behind The Waterfall
      09. A.E.O.N. 19th
      10. Bestiality Vs. Integrity
      11. Clerics Emotion

      VISIONS OF ATLANTIS' fifth album, "Ethera", is scheduled for an early 2013 release via Napalm Records.

      VISIONS OF ATLANTIS' "Maria Magdelena" EP was released in October 2011.
      Athens, Greece-based hard rockers DANGER ANGEL will release of their new album, "Revolutia", on January 29 via Perris Records. The CD was recorded during 2012 under the guidance of legendary singer Jeff Scott Soto (TALISMAN, JOURNEY, YNGWIE MALMSTEEN) who produced the effort.

      DANGER ANGEL came to Jeff's attention back in 2009 when he was asked to participate on a track for their 2010 debut album. The band parted ways with their vocalist and brought in a more prominent vocalist named Minas Tsigos to help them find a new direction and focus, recruiting Soto to produce their follow-up album, "Revolutia", of which Jeff was "beyond proud to be a part." Jeff also sings most of the backing vocals on the album as well as sharing some lead vocals on the single "When I'm Gone".

      "Revolutia" contains 12 songs (plus one bonus track) which were recorded in Athens and mixed and mastered by Jeff's longtime producer John Ellis at the Prism Sound Studios in Boston, Massachusetts.

      The first single, "When I'm Gone", is available for preview below.

      DANGER ANGEL will support Jeff Scott Soto on a European tour in April.
      Drummer Matt Sorum (GUNS N' ROSES, VELVET REVOLVER, THE CULT) recently entered the studio to begin recording his new solo album. Speaking to Music Radar, Sorum stated about how the idea for a new solo CD came about: "I started writing it within the last couple of years. I went out to the desert because of Gram Parsons and all those guys — you know, the Joshua Tree, Palm Springs area — and I had an amazing time working there. I went to a trippy old hotel and wrote eight songs in five days. A lot of people don't know me as a songwriter, but I've always been a guitar player. I like to dabble with the acoustic. The stuff that I've written for VELVET REVOLVER — like 'Set Me Free' and 'Spectacle' and a few on the first record — those were done on an acoustic.

      "I made a record with another guy called 'Hollywood Zen', and that was my first attempt to do my own thing. I was a bit nervous, though, so I can't really say that it was my record — it's a collaboration. My main goal on this record is to write everything myself.

      "What's been happening with me is, I'm getting older, and I'm a different guy… I'm not on drugs and alcohol anymore. [laughs] I'm more spiritual. I'm thinking about the planet and caring about other people more, and I've got a charity… And that sparked a lot of lyrics. I have a song called 'Lady Of The Stone', which is about Mother Nature's perspective on what's happening to the planet. What would she say if she was watching?

      "I wrote another song called 'Land Of The Pure'. I was very struck by what happened with the girl Malala [Yousafza] from Pakistan. I wrote it about the girls in Pakistan — young girls all over the world — who are not being allowed to be educated. I'm going to have a singer named Atif Aslam, who's from Pakistan, sing on it. That's very eclectic. There's going to be a lot of percussion and orchestration. People are going to trip to it."

      "For the second part of my trip, I hung out on the beach. I stayed at a little hotel called the Surf and Sand Hotel — I used to go there in the early '70s with my grandparents. While there, I wrote a song called 'The Sea'. I remembered how much I loved the beach as a kid. Nothing seems to matter when you're on the beach.

      "I wrote another song there called 'Blue'. I was thinking, Why does the word 'blue' always mean sadness? I wrote it as a positive thing — the sky, the water. It's a Tom Petty-meets-David Gray kind of song. It's pretty cool.

      "And I wrote a song called 'Josephine', which is my grandmother's name. She and my grandfather were married for 69 years. The song is about him being in the orchestra pit, he was in the band, and her being a ballerina. They met in the 1920s. My grandmother just turned 100. The song is going to be all orchestra and piano. It's an ode to them."

      Asked why he doesn't play drums on the album, he said: "I feel like it's not right for this record. I want to have a producer's perspective, so I don't want to sit there and analyze my drumming. I've been rehearsing the band, I put a great band together. I've got a drummer named Brian MacLeod, who's played with everyone from Sheryl Crow to Linda Perry — he's been on tons of records. He's got more of that gift. I'm a rock drummer, but I can play other styles. He can play more organic, singer-songwriter stuff. As light as I play, I have a sound that might be more rock."
      According to Italy's Soundsblog.it, CAYNE/ex-LACUNA COIL guitarist Claudio Leo died this morning after struggling with an undisclosed "serious disease." The exact cause of death has not yet been revealed.

      A message at Cayne's Facebook page simply states: "Goodbye Claudio. Rest in peace, brother."

      LACUNA COIL vocalist Cristina Scabbia said in an online posting: "It's with deep sadness that I inform you all that our dear friend and ex-guitar player Claudio Leo left us. My deepest condolences to his family, close friends and the band CAYNE. You will always be remembered for your strength and positivity. We love you, Claudio."

      Claudio played with LACUNA COIL from 1994 to 1998 and appeared on the band's demo tape when they were still called ETHEREAL and the 1998 self-titled EP.

      Leo was a founding member of gothic rock act CAYNE, which will release its self-titled sophomore album on February 14.
      On February 12, Eagle Rock Entertainment and earMusic will release TARJA TURUNEN & HARUS "In Concert - Live At Sibelius Hall" in North America on CD, digital audio, and Blu-ray/CD.

      The HARUS live album/DVD was made available in Europe in 2011 by earMUSIC in collaboration with Edel's classic music division Berlin Classics. This joint venture from two music labels apparently far away from each other would probably sound bizarre at first sight (a label operating in alternative and metal music with one representing traditional classical music artists). The reason lies beneath the many sides of Tarja Turunen's music.

      It's widely known that Tarja's music background is in classical music. She later became one of the most important female voices of metal, first as part of multi-million seller NIGHTWISH and later with her successful solo career, carrying her own name.

      After two gems of heavy rock, Tarja can finally go back to her "first love" for a while. The new live CD and DVD shows a side of Tarja's music personality that so far was only enjoyed by the lucky fans attending her classical music concerts.

      The first output of HARUS features traditional and emotional music from Finland presented together with more international repertoire. If Tarja's vocal approach when it comes to rock music is "classical", what stands out in this new musical adventure is the modern approach to classical music.

      Tarja Turunen and HARUS created a unique blend of organ, electric guitar, percussion and voice. Tarja has the talent to make it sound warm and soft, appealing for the purists as well as for the fans who follow her with a unique dedication.

      Besides Tarja's metal superstar status, HARUS represents the start of a new journey, crossing genres and music cultures. HARUS is a rather peculiar, uncommon Finnish word that describes the four tensors that keep a tent together or the tensor that keeps the mast from falling in a sailing boat. Both of the meanings apply to the musicians involved in Tarja's new project: four members, four equals, four different backgrounds to tie together exquisite classical music developed strongly and in a very stable way, with a taste of experimental, modern feel.

      Tarja has declared: "In 2006 we did our first concert together. We had such a joy and fun that we decided to keep on performing as a group. The name came many years after when we believed it is time to make it official. What is special in HARUS is that every concert represents a magic moment. We have the freedom to be inspired by our own emotions. We hope to be able to offer you that spirit with this CD/DVD."

      HARUS is:

      Tarja Turunen: Vocals
      Kalevi Kiviniemi: Organ
      Marzi Nyman: Guitar
      Markku Krohn: Percussion

      CD track listing:

      * Arkihuolesi Kaikki Heitä
      Music Leevi Madetoja, Lyrics Alpo Noponen
      Arrangement Marzi Nyman
      WCMF Serious Catalogue

      * Ave Maria Op. 80
      Music Luigi Luzzi, Lyrics Trad.
      Arrangement Jarkko Kiiski (percussion), Kalevi Kiviniemi (organ)

      * Ave Maria
      Music Tarja Turunen, Lyrics Trad.
      Arrangement Kalevi Kiviniemi, Marzi Nyman
      Universal Music Publishing

      * Maa On Niin Kaunis
      Music Trad. Lyrics Bernhard Ingemann (Finnish Lyrics Hilja Haahti)
      Arrangement Anders Öhrwall, Marzi Nyman (guitar)

      * Varpunen Jouluaamuna
      Music Otto Kotilainen, Lyrics Zacharias Topelius (Finnish Lyrics K.A. Hougberg)
      Arrangement Marzi Nyman (guitar)
      WCMF Serious Catalogue

      * Heinillä Härkien
      Music Trad. Lyrics Martti Korpilahti
      Arrangement Olli Ahvenlahti, Kalevi Kiviniemi, Marzi Nyman
      Copyright Control

      * En Etsi Valtaa Loistoa
      Music Jean Sibelius, Lyrics Zacharias Topelius
      Arrangement Marzi Nyman (guitar)
      Warner Chappel Music Finland

      * Jouluyö, Juhlayö (Silent Night)
      Music Franz Gruber, Lyrics Joseph Mohr (Finnish lyrics G.O Schönemann)
      Arrangement Marzi Nyman, Kalevi Kiviniemi

      * Astral Bells
      Markku Krohn, Marzi Nyman, Kalevi Kiviniemi

      * You Would Have Loved This
      Cori Connors
      Arrangement Marzi Nyman
      Songcastle Music

      * Walking In The Air
      Howard Blake
      Arrangement Marzi Nyman, Kalevi Kiviniemi
      EMI Music Publishing

      * Improvisation: Variations Sur Un Noël
      Kalevi Kiviniemi

      CD-exclusive bonus track
      Recorded at Melbourne Town Hall, Australia

      DVD/Blu-ray track listing:

      * Heinillä Härkien
      Music Trad. Lyrics Martti Korpilahti
      Arrangement Olli Ahvenlahti, Kalevi Kiviniemi, Marzi Nyman
      Copyright Control

      * Ave Maria Op. 80
      Music Luigi Luzzi, Lyrics Trad.
      Arrangement Jarkko Kiiski (percussion), Kalevi Kiviniemi (organ)

      * Varpunen Jouluaamuna
      Music Otto Kotilainen, Lyrics Zacharias Topelius (Finnish Lyrics K.A. Hougberg)
      Arrangement Marzi Nyman (guitar)
      WCMF Serious Catalogue

      * Maa On Niin Kaunis
      Music Trad. Lyrics Bernhard Ingemann (Finnish Lyrics Hilja Haahti)
      Arrangement Anders Öhrwall, Marzi Nyman (guitar)

      * Concert Etude
      Franz Liszt
      Arrangement Kalevi Kiviniemi
      DVD /Blu-Ray Exclusive

      * En Etsi Valtaa Loistoa
      Music Jean Sibelius, Lyrics Zacharias Topelius
      Arrangement Marzi Nyman (guitar)
      Warner Chappel Music Finland

      * Arkihuolesi Kaikki Heitä
      Music Leevi Madetoja, Lyrics Alpo Noponen
      Arrangement Marzi Nyman
      WCMF Serious Catalogue

      * Improvisation On Christmas Themes
      Kalevi Kiviniemi
      DVD /Blu-Ray Exclusive

      * Ave Maria
      Music Tarja Turunen, Lyrics Trad.
      Arrangement Kalevi Kiviniemi, Marzi Nyman
      Universal Music Publishing

      * You Would Have Loved This
      Cori Connors
      Arrangement Marzi Nyman
      Songcastle Music

      * Astral Bells
      Markku Krohn, Marzi Nyman, Kalevi Kiviniemi

      * Ave Maria
      Music Giulio Caccini, Lyrics Trad.
      Arrangement Marzi Nyman, Jarkko Kiiski, Kalevi Kiviniemi
      DVD /Blu-Ray EXCLUSIVE

      * Walking In The Air
      Howard Blake
      Arrangement Marzi Nyman, Kalevi Kiviniemi
      EMI Music Publishing

      * Jouluyö, Juhlayö (Silent Night)
      Music Franz Gruber, Lyrics Joseph Mohr (Finnish lyrics G.O. Schönemann)
      Arrangement Marzi Nyman, Kalevi Kiviniemi
      Because of his commitments to TOKYO BLADE since July 2010, vocalist Nicolaj Ruhnow was forced to push all activities regarding to his solo project called NICK HELLFORT aside, which resuted in the postponement in the release of his almost-finished debut, "The Mask Within". This turned out being a wise decision, as Nicolaj went through a number of new experiences with his bandmates and friends in TOKYO BLADE on the road, which led him to re-record many of the vocals tracks on the CD — "to give 'The Mask Within' a way wider range, musically and emotionally," he says in a press release.

      "The Mask Within" will be released on March 1 via Sonic Revolution/Fastball Music.

      A completely new lineup will be announced very soon and rehearsals for upcoming live shows in March and April 2013 are in full swing.

      Says Nicolaj: "Thanks to the stunning help from producer Arne Lakenmacher (High Gain Recording Studios) and fantastic multi-instrumentalist Lady CatmanDIE APOKALYPTISCHEN REITER), who helped me realizing 'The Mask Within'."

      "The Mask Within" track listing:

      01. Temple Of Kings
      02. Fame Is Just A Whore
      03. Stepwise & Silently
      04. The Arrival
      05. Perception
      06. For All Time
      07. Lifeline
      08. The Antichrist Wore Black
      09. Journey Throu' A Cup Of Tea

      Bonus tracks:

      10. Crusaders (demo 2007)
      11. The Messenger (demo 2007)
      DISTURBED went on an open-ended hiatus in 2011, following the completion of the touring cycle for its 2010 album "Asylum". The band's frontman, David Draiman, has since launched a new project, DEVICE, with former FILTER guitarist Geno Lenardo, while DISTURBED bassist John Moyer branched out recently by joining ADRENALINE MOB, a new group also featuring ex-DREAM THEATER and AVENGED SEVENFOLD drummer Mike Portnoy.

      Speaking to Artisan News earlier this month (see video below), Draiman stated about DISTURBED's current status: "It's just exactly what it means. I mean, the beast certainly is not dead — it's just sleeping for a little while."

      He continued: "Look, myself, Dan [Donegan, guitar], Mike [Wengren, drums] and John [Moyer, bass], we've given our lives to that band, but there's more to us, each individually. John went to go work with ADRENALINE MOB for a little while, and he's got his music school that he's trying to get off the ground. I know Dan and Mike have been enjoying spending time with their families, and I hear whisperings that they have a little thing [new project] going on as well. I think that it's good for each of us to take some time away from something that's been so all-encompassing in every part of our lives for 16 years."

      According to Draiman, DISTURBED's decision to take a break was not caused by internal strife and he says that the bandmembers remain in regular contact while pursuing other interest and musical projects.

      "We're all on great terms and we continue to have a very, very huge mutual respect and admiration for another; we check in on each other's families," he said. "This was not a hiatus that was brought about by bad blood, this was not a hiatus that was brought about by any sort of legality or for me to decide to start a family or any of the rest of the nonsense that gets thrown out there. All the rest of the guys have families and we've been touring on the road with them the entire damn time. So one has nothing to do with the other."

      DISTURBED has not indicated when it plans to return, although all four members say they're likely to come back.

      "Vilify", the first single from DEVICE, will go for radio adds on February 19. The band's full-length debut will follow on April 9 via Warner Bros.
      Danish thrashers ESSENCE will release their new album, "Last Night Of Solace", on March 29 via NoiseArt Records. The effort will be made available as a limited CD in a slipcase and will include a bonus track. The CD was recorded, engineered and produced by Swedish mastermind Peter Tägtgren (PAIN, HYPOCRISY, IMMORTAL, CHILDREN OF BODOM, DIMMU BORGIR) at his Abyss Studio.

      Commented ESSENCE: "'Last Night Of Solace' is very different from our last album. We have matured in our songwriting, our abilities and our expression.

      "It is difficult to describe the album with words, but 'enormous' covers a lot of what the listener will hear on the record.

      "We needed to make this album the way it is today, because it is a statement and it will serve as a point of reference in the future. Also, we did what came naturally and 'all by itself' to us.

      "There is nothing 'forced' on this album and it is just our clean personal energy captured on in 10 tracks. You can hear that the album is recorded in extreme sub-zero temperatures and in the middle of a frozen Swedish winter."

      "Last Night Of Solace" track listing:

      01. Intro
      02. Final Eclipse
      03. Arachnida
      04. For The Fallen
      05. Children Of Rwanda
      06. Gemstones
      07. Dark Matter
      08. Last Night Of Solace
      09. Opium
      10. Fractured Dimension (bonus track)

      The cover artwork can be seen below.

      ESSENCE was awarded the deal with NoiseArt Records as part of a contest launched by the Austrian management and booking company Rock The Nation. This unique competition was presented and promoted by several leading European metal magazines, including Noizeletter, Metalnews.de, Stormbringer.at and Rock Hard Italy.

      The Rock The Nation Award was launched in 2009 and has resulted in record and booking deals for STEELWING, SUICIDAL ANGELS (2009), SKULL FIST (2010), KRAMPUS and NEXUS INFERIS (2011).

      ESSENCE has already shared stage with such acts as IN FLAMES, ENTOMBED and VADER nas has played the Roskilde (Denmark) and Vagos Open Air (Portugal) festivals, among others.
      Patrick Prince of Powerline recently conducted an interview with legendary guitarist Uli Jon Roth (ex-SCORPIONS). A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

      Powerline: Will the SCORPIONS set [during the upcoming tour commemorating his 40th anniversary of joining the SCORPIONS] be mostly the stuff you had written?

      Roth: It is mostly the stuff that I've written or my favorites from then. I was involved in virtually every track back then, even if there's not a writer's credit. Very often I would contribute quite a lot of things to it — the guitar leads or whatever. We're playing a track like "In Trance", for instance, which was written by Rudolf (Schenker) and Klaus (Meine), but then again, the way I wrote the guitar parts for many of Rudolf's songs they somehow feel like a composition within a composition and those parts came from me. These songs wouldn't have the same feel without them. Back then I could have had co-writer's credits for these, but it didn't seem important. I'm playing long sets anyway. We're doing other stuff as well but in every show we'll include several pieces from every SCORPIONS album that I've played on. And that's quite a few, so … yes, it will amount to an entire SCORPIONS set. You'll definitely get at least an hours worth, maybe even more, of just that old stuff.

      Powerline: Will you be playing "Sails Of Charon"?

      Roth: Oh, absolutely. We're playing it every day and in a very extended version with a middle section. To me, that's always one of the highlights of the show. And it's strange, during the time of the SCORPIONS, we never played it live. It was a little bit too complex for us to do live back then, and then afterwards hardly ever played it live and I really only found the key to doing that piece much later. Now it's taken on a new lease on life, I would have to say.

      Powerline: Sometimes that's how creativity works, right? You revisit something and you find certain treasures in it later on.

      Roth: That's exactly what I'm doing with all the tracks. I take this tour very seriously — also because we're recording it and we're going to be doing a live double album. So I want to come up with something that's at least kind of, like, from my point of view, the definitive version of these tracks for what I can do now. And that means, yes, we have rewritten certain sections and I've even rewritten certain pieces of lyrics a little bit. Expand certain songs, edited down others, to get the best out of them in the live environment. And some of them have really revealed a lot of new life that I never knew existed. And so I started looking at them in a different way. I enjoy playing them live and I have to say that wasn't always the case. I found a new way into that.

      Powerline: I look at it this way. If I go to a SCORPIONS show, I'm not going to hear any of these songs, probably.

      Roth: No. They sometimes play "We'll Burn the Sky" when I'm not there but that's pretty much as far as it goes.

      Powerline: But with SCORPIONS fans, there is a dichotomy. You have fans who like just that early period and then you have fans who like the new period.

      Roth: It is a split. That's very true.

      Powerline: And in some respects it's like an entirely different band.

      Roth: Very much so. The vocal sound is the same. Rudolf is the same. Francis (Buchholz, bass) is the same. But everything else pretty much was different and the choice of material was different. I guess it was a lot more free flow back then and in some ways more experimental. We took all sorts of liberties and we didn't necessarily just look at it from a commercial point of view. At least I didn't. It was mainly from an artistic angle.

      Powerline: And you could say philosophically and intellectually things really changed. I just couldn't picture you playing on "Rock You Like A Hurricane".

      Roth: I'll tell you one thing. I think it's an amazing rock song. The thing that's not for me is the lyrics. I mean, the title is okay, but then it's all this pseudo-sexual stuff and that is one of the reasons why I did leave the SCORPIONS. I just didn't want to have to fit into this cliché of sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll. It was never that for me in the first place and it still isn't to this day. I was never interested in any of that stuff. It wasn't my motivation. Lyrics for me always played a very important role. If you have to say something meaningful, then say it. And if you don't, then just hold your tongue. As successful as "Rock You Like A Hurricane" is — and apart from "Wind Of Change", it's easily the most successful one that they've done — it has a great riff, it has a great hook, but as I said, those kind of lyrics mean nothing to me. I don't want to be associated with it on an artistic level. I could maybe play it on stage and jam with the band but on an album, I probably would have fought tooth and nail against its lyrics.

      Powerline: You're right about the sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll cliche.

      Roth: And you know, particularly the SCORPIONS. They're not even that kind of band. They're all like nice, family-loving guys. [laughs] It's not even something I can buy it of them, that kind of angle. Having said that, most of the audience don't seem to mind those kind of lyrics as long as there's a catchy hook and the SCORPIONS have tons of that and they are great songwriters. And the stuff is all musically somehow interesting whatever they're doing because they always have a melodic angle or some idea that makes sense musically.
      Greek epic heavy metal band VALOR has inked a deal with Pitch Black Records. The group's new album, "The Yonder Answer", will be released on March 5. The CD "is the result of an intensive collaborative effort between all band members the result of which is an album full of melody and passion and pure epic heaviness!" according to a press release.

      "The Yonder Answer" track listing:

      01. The Journey Begins (intro)
      02. The Answer's Yonder
      03. Crossroads
      04. The Guides
      05. Follow Me
      06. The Bravest Of Them All
      07. Choices
      08. One Hand Red
      09. H.U.M.A.N.
      10. Inner Nature

      The song "The Answer's Yonder" is available for streaming using the SoundCloud player below.

      VALOR was formed in 2002 and two years later released its first mini-CD, "The Nameless One", which received high praise from international underground media. In 2008 came the band's first full-length album, "Destiny's Path", which was met with great reviews while laying down a strong foundation for a solid bond between bandmembers as friends and as musicians.

      VALOR is:

      Vaggelis Krouskas: Vocals
      Chris Remoundos: Bass
      Spyros Soldatos: Guitars
      Vasilis Kourkoutas: Guitars
      Thanasis Lois: Keyboards
      Andritsos Thodoris: Drums
      When SHINEDOWN and THREE DAYS GRACE hit the road along with P.O.D. for a lengthy North American tour next month, one thing will be missing: THREE DAYS GRACE frontman Adam Gontier, who announced his resignation earlier this month from the band he co-founded 20 years ago. According to The Pulse Of Radio, SHINEDOWN singer Brent Smith was asked by radio station TK101 in Pensacola, Florida if Gontier's departure gave him any second thoughts about the tour. "I wish Adam the best that I possibly can for whatever it is that he needs to do in his own journey in his personal life," he said. "Now, I think that it is extremely ballsy of the band, THREE DAYS GRACE, to not only say that they're gonna continue on with the tour, but that they're not gonna let it put a negative spin on anything."

      Gontier resigned from THREE DAYS GRACE in late December, with the news going public earlier this month.

      While the band chalked his exit up to a "health issue," Gontier himself said he was "inspired by life, to move on and to continue to evolve on my own terms."

      His exit comes while the band's fourth album, "Transit Of Venus", is still going strong on the rock radio charts. The group immediately named MY DARKEST DAYS frontman Matt Walst, brother of THREE DAYS GRACE bassist Brad Walst, as lead singer for the upcoming tour.

      The SHINEDOWN/THREE DAYS GRACE tour will kick off on February 1 in Moline, Illinois, with dates booked into March.

      Meanwhile, THREE DAYS GRACE has shared more details of how Adam Gontier told the band he was leaving, with the group's explanation raising more questions about Gontier's motivations and the way he ended his relationship with his bandmates of 20 years. The band posted a statement online that said, "It had been our desire to keep an internal band matter just that, internal. However, after public statements by Adam we feel the need to give our fans the facts. Here's the exact timeline of events over the past few weeks."

      The band spells out that it received a letter on December 21 from Gontier's lawyer, which stated, "Please be advised effective immediately Adam is terminating his involvement with the band THREE DAYS GRACE. Adam has been wrestling with a health issue, outlined in the attached letter (a doctor's letter dated December 14), which would have precluded him from touring with the band in 2013 and he wants the group to continue moving forward as they see fit while not holding them back."

      The post from THREE DAYS GRACE added that Gontier made no mention of any health issues during a brief December tour, and that bassist Brad Walst tried to reach out to Gontier via text to see if his decision was final. Gontier texted back, "My decision is 100 percent. My relationship with THREE DAYS GRACE is over."

      The band concluded, "How would you feel if you were in our shoes? Someone you had known for 20 years, whom you had grown up with, gone through ups and downs with, shared dreams with, ends that relationship as if you had known him for a single day with a letter from a lawyer."

      Gontier has since said that his exit had nothing to do with his health, but rather his desire to "evolve" on his "own terms."

      The singer will participate in a charity show on Thursday (January 17) in New York City as a solo artist.
      U.K. modern metallers MALEFICE will release their fifth album, "Five", on April 28 via Transcend Music.

      Since bursting onto the U.K. metal music scene in 2007, MALEFICE has established its very own unique sound often described as brutal, belligerent, bold and undeniably British.

      Commented singer Dale Butler: "After being written off, we're back to where we thrive the most. Being the underdog.

      "We've always delivered something new and exciting in adversity and this time is no exception. The changes we have made have given us time to regroup and reinvent the sound of this band.

      "Expect more bounce than ever, more hate than ever and more soul than ever. This is a record of feelings, how we are, where we want to be and where we will get to. This is the album we always wanted to write, where the evolution has taken us and has renewed our 'take-no-prisoners' attitude, something we always have at our live shows. You can hear the clarion call to arms in this recording.

      "All music is a personal statement. This is our statement that no matter what, nothing can hold us back, nothing will keep us down and together we can, will and have survived all the bullshit thrown at us. This record represents everything we are as a collective and as individuals. It'll be the soundtrack to your parties in 2013."

      "Five" track listing:

      01. V
      02. The Great Deceiver
      03. Never Say Die
      04. Wasted
      05. Time
      06. Blueprints
      07. Reach Up

      MALEFICE's last full-length album, "Awaken The Tides", was released in July 2011 via Metal Blade Records. The 10-song effort was recorded at The Face studios in Reading with drums laid down at Fortress Studios in London. All tracks were mixed and mastered by Justin Hill.
      Italian singer Chris Heaven has resurrected the EDGE OF TIME project with Japanese guitarist Yasu Matsushita and Italian keyboard player Luigi Accardo.

      In 2002, Heaven and Michael Von Knorring (Yngwie Malmsteen's drummer on the "Eclipse" LP) recorded some songs together for benefit tribute albums and started to work on material for EDGE OF TIME. But Von Knorring left the group in order to receive treatment for the same health problems he suffered during "Eclipse" tour and EDGE OF TIME eventually disbanded.

      EDGE OF TIME's forthcoming album will feature guest appearances by former members of YNGWIE MALMSTEEN, DIO and EMPIRE, among others.
      New Jersey-based "mathcore" act THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN last fall entered the studio with producer Steve Evetts (EVERY TIME I DIE, POISON THE WELL, SUICIDE SILENCE, SEPULTURA) to begin recording its new album for a spring release through the group's own imprint Party Smasher Inc. via a deal with Sumerian Records.

      Speaking to Revolver magazine, THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN vocalist Greg Puciato stated about the band's forthcoming CD: "I hate to always be the person that's like, 'This is our best new album,' because I think every time it's the best one. I'm realizing that all you can try to do is take an honest snapshot of where everyone is at the moment and hope that that place happens to be good when you look back at it. When you're in it, you're too emotionally attached to it to really gain any kind of hindsight to it. Now that we've been around for a while, I can kind of be a little bit more objective and see what records were the ones where we made big leaps — the obvious ones, like 'Calculating Infinity', was a big jump, and I feel like 'Miss Machine' was a really big jump. I feel like our work on 'Option Paralysis' was like us refining 'Miss Machine'. It wasn't like we were making colossal jumps. This is the first one since 'Miss Machine' where I felt like, wow, all of us as individuals and collectively are moving into, like, some other phase of our career. I think we've all just gotten a lot better as individuals and we've already had our fucking growing pains and we've already fought our brains out. We went from being kids to adults together. We kind of all realized our strengths and how to leave one another alone and not have ego clashes. I think this record is the record where we're like adults now. People have gotten married or we have serious girlfriends, like, really major shit has gone down in our lives, and it just seemed really… it seemed like less edge-of-our-pants, not knowing if we were gonna pull it together."

      Regarding the songwriting process and the musical direction of THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN's new material, Puciato said: "We have 11 [songs that we are recording for the album]. Sometimes we go in and have everything 80 percent done and we're trying to wing it as we go. This time, everything was really fixed. We really had most of the T's crossed and the I's dotted ahead of time. It feels really like confident as a band to be like, 'Yeah, we're gonna go fuck shit up.' That's a good feeling. We've actually never had a leftover song. We said, 'Let's not fuck around and spend all this time learning all these weird rhythms and trying to make everything faster, more aggressive, trickier, and all that stuff if we're just gonna throw it out. Let's figure out early on if it sucks and just get rid of it."

      He added: "We made a really conscious effort this time to try to do some different stuff. I feel like, as any band that's put out a bunch of records, we have our patterns, even if our patterns are a little harder to decipher. We've made a really deliberate, conscious effort to be like, 'The first song is gonna start differently than any DILLINGER record, because every DILLINGER record starts with like a train wreck and 'Aaahhhh' right away.' We want to do it differently this time. Ya know, 'Have we ever started a song with bass before? No? Well, let's start a song with bass.' 'Have we ever started a song with just drums? No, we haven't done that? Let's do that.' Just anything we can do to push ourselves into uncomfortable territory now because I think that's necessary because no one else is gonna do it. We have to make effort to be like, 'This is what we would normally do. Let's deliberately not do that.' It's actually made everything a lot more interesting for us. Those little things make a difference. We push each other creatively."

      Asked about of THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN's new deal with Sumerian Records, Greg said: "We've known Ash [Avildsen, Sumerian Records president] for a really long time, especially me being from Baltimore. He's kind of always been in this weird, parallel trajectory to us as far as coming from a similar scene and having big aspirations of where he could go from where he started. It just made sense. That's all I can really say about it. We had to mutually bring to the table for one another.

      "It was just nice to talk to someone who wasn't 60 that owned the record label. They didn't have to unlearn things. A lot of record companies have to unlearn all of these things because the paradigm shifted and now they're trying to adjust. Whereas that record label grew up in the collapse of the record industry, so they already understand the differences between the old way of doing things and the new way of doing things. It's just also, for me, really killer to have the guy that owns the label live a 15-minute drive away from me. We can go talk about shit really easily instead of last time where Season Of Mist is in France and you have to send an email and they don't quite understand you and there's a language barrier. We can just go get food and be like, 'This is what we're thinking about for this video. I'm gonna bring my laptop and show you this guy's videos.' You bring a laptop and show me some guys that you think are cool instead of just being like sending links, typing lots of emails. Everything just feels like when you're a kid and you're all in the same room together and get it done really quickly."
      After a 12-year absence from North America, Norwegian Viking metal veterans EINHERJER have announced plans to ransack the continent this spring. The band will kick off the "Dragons Over Vineland" Canadian tour, on which they'll be supported by PANZERFAUST, in Toronto on March 15. Prior to this, EINHERJER will play a showcase at the prestigious South By Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, in addition to headlining the 2013 Heathen Crusade Metalfest in St. Paul, Minnesota. Full dates can be found below.

      EINHERJER will tour in support of its acclaimed 2011 Indie Recordings debut (and fifth album overall), "Norrøn", the first new release from the band in eight years. Recorded at Studio Borealis in the band's home town of Haugesund, Norway and produced by vocalist/guitarist Frode Glesnes, the six-track album was mixed and mastered by Matt Hyde (SLAYER, CHILDREN OF BODOM).

      Catch EINHERJER live on one of the following dates:

      March 09 - St. Paul, MN - Heathen Crusade Metalfest
      March 13 - Austin, TX - South by Southwest (venue to be announced)
      March 15 - Toronto, ON - Hard Luck Bar *
      March 16 - Sudbury, ON - Byscenen *
      March 18 - Ottawa, ON - Maverick *
      March 19 - Montreal, QC - Katacombes *
      March 20 - Quebec City, QC - L'Agité *
      March 21 - Jonquière, QC - Place Nikitoutagan *
      March 22 - Trois-Rivières, QC - Rock Cafe le Stage *
      March 23 - St-Hyacinthe, QC - Bar le Trash *
      April 06 - Haugesund, Norway - Byscenen

      * With PANZERFAUST
      Florida death metal veterans DEICIDE will embark on "The End Of The Word Tour 2013" in March, with support from DESTINITY, KARNAK, SWEETEST DEVILRY and ARVAS (March 1-10 only).

      For a list of tour dates, see the poster below.

      DEICIDE's latest album, "To Hell With God", sold 2,200 copies in the United States in its first week of release. The CD was issued on February 15, 2011 via Century Media Records. It was produced by Mark Lewis (THE BLACK DAHLIA MURDER, CHIMAIRA) at Audiohammer Studios in Sanford, Florida.

      DEICIDE's previous CD, "Till Death Do Us Part", opened with 2,900 copies back in May 2008.

      DEICIDE's "Conviction" video was directed by David Brodsky and Tim Kellen (Brodsky also handled editing duties while Kellen animated the video) and produced by MyGoodEye LLC. The clip tells the story of frontman Glen Benton and his pursuit of Jesus, claymation-style.

      DEICIDE last year completed the North American headlining "March Of Death 2012" trek, with support from JUNGLE ROT, ABIGAIL WILLIAMS and LECHEROUS NOCTURNE.
      "Those Having Been Hidden Away", a brand new song from the South Carolina-based extreme metal band LECHEROUS NOCTURNE, can be streamed using the audio player below. The track comes off the group's third album, "Behold Almighty Doctrine", which will be released on March 19 via Unique Leader Records. The CD was recorded at SoundLab Studio in Lexington, South Carolina with longtime engineer Bob Moore.

      "Behold Almighty Doctrine" track listing:

      01. Intro
      02. Ouroboros Chains
      03. Bring The Void
      04. Archeopteryx
      05. Those Having Been Hidden Away
      06. Prelude #2
      07. Judgments And Curses
      08. Lesions From Vicious Plague
      09. Caustic Vertigo
      10. Creation Continuum

      The "Behold Almighty Doctrine" artwork can be seen below.

      Vocalist Jason Hohenstein announced his departure from LECHEROUS NOCTURNE in July 2011, telling BLABBERMOUTH.NET in a statement, "I was writing/arranging in preparation of the new record when I was asked to leave." He added, "I did not quit! I want to make that perfectly clear."


      Christian "Kreishloff" Lofgren: Guitar
      Ethan Lane: Guitar
      James Oneal: Bass
      Alex Lancia: Drums
      Chris Lollis: Vocals

      LECHEROUS NOCTURNE's second album, "The Age of Miracles

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